Growing up, I could count up to ten in Croatian because it made my great-grandmother smile. Oh, and I got candy from her as well because by accident my brother and I spoke to her in French one day out of sheer frustration/curiosity and we discovered—to our mutual joy—that the word for candy (bonbon) is the same in French and Croatian.
But that was then, and this is now. I’ve been living in Zagreb for almost six years and Croatia is my permanent home now. And I’ve survived this long thanks in large part to the generosity of my family and friends, as well as a lot of hard work.
As a Croatian (heritage and now citizenship) born and raised in Canada, I didn’t have any contact with Croatia whatsoever until I was 22 years-old. I never attended any Croatian church services or gatherings or picnics or anything at all organized by the Croatian diaspora community in Canada.
My point is this: I am here in Croatia because I made a conscious choice to move here, learn the language and accept its customs and traditions through no outside circumstances or pressure whatsoever. I am here because I want to be here. And I think this country can achieve so much if we collectively decide to make some much-needed changes. I hope this helps to absolve me of any forthcoming “criticisms” (or rather “tough-love”) that I may express during these posts.
In this blog, I will be making observations about everyday life in Croatia, as well as a general commentary on the political, cultural and social situation here. I will be asking questions and doing my best to answer them as I make no claims of being an expert in sociology or psychology or otherwise.
I love Croatia/Croatians and I wouldn’t want to live in any other country. I have such a high opinion of Croatia and all that it can accomplish, so my comments or criticisms are only out of love for this country and its people.
My name is Nikola Badovinac and this is my two cents.